The Relationship between the Imam and the Ummah (Community) in the View of the Sunnis: A Study of the Perspective of Ghazi Abu Bakr al-Baghelani

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assistant Professor, Department of Theology and Islamic Teachings, Lorestan University, Lorestan, Iran

2 Master's Graduate in Islamic Theology, University of Qom, Qom, Iran


One of the central issues regarding the imamate is the relationship between the imam and the ummah (community). Following many Sunni theologians, Ghazi Baghelani believes that the "Imam" is a kind of apparent government official who, in addition to examining social and political issues such as establishing hodud (boundaries), collecting religious funds and taking care of the country, preserves and implements religion. On the other hand, the ummah also has duties such as loyalty and steadfastness in allegiance and commitment to its imam and ruler. According to Ghazi Baghelani, the position of imamate is one of the branches of religion and a secondary and social position that the Islamic community is free to select and conclude, and the philosophy of its election is to implement the divine rules, for the implementation of rules and jihad in the way of God is not possible without the imam. In this view, although infallibility is not a condition of the imam, obedience to him is obligatory, a belief that goes back to the Sunni view of the principles and methods of selecting the imam. Using an analytical method, the present paper after stating the necessity of imamate in the religion of Islam, specifically explains the view of Ghazi Baghelani in this regard.


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